Near Partner is one of Portugal’s Happiest companies

Near Partner is one of Portugal’s Happiest companies, and it shows!

A study with more than 300 companies named Near Partner one of the Happiest Companies in Portugal.
And this is what it looks like from the inside. 😊

We have big news!

Happiness Works 2021, a study that assesses the level of happiness in organizations in Portugal, currently in its 10th edition, has ranked Near Partner in the top 20 happiest companies. We are extra proud to have been selected just a few days after our 4th birthday.

 

Diploma Empresa Feliz 2021 - Near Partner

Happy Company 2021 Diploma – Near Partner

 

The selection process involved over 6.300 people in 300 organizations and required employees to take part anonymously. Questions ranged from work life balance, leadership empathy, work atmosphere, corporate values, and purpose, and many other.

In short, the purpose was to answer one vital question: Are you happy working at Near Partner? To celebrate this award, we wanted to give you a glimpse of how it really feels to work here. So, we asked around.

What makes Near Partner different?

Our CEO and Founder, Pedro Veloso, always told us that “Near Partner was born from the notion that when good people come together, in a perfect blend of comfortable surroundings and interesting challenges, a virtuous circle of innovation emerges.”

As a result, “both the business and the individual prosper.” In Portugal, we have a wide pool of highly skilled programmers. This proved to be the cornerstone of our growth.

For Diogo Soares, our senior full-stack developer, what impresses him the most is “the fact that the company cares.” And he adds that he doesn’t remember having been in another company with the same level of care for the welfare of workers.

We are so proud of that! 😊

Jean Lelis has recently joined our team. He made sure to share his first couple of months’  impressions with us. For him, “the culture is one of continuous development in order to have well-trained, motivated professionals with excellent technical skills. But the essence is the care for others.”

Indira Sanches highlights what for her makes Near Partner: “I feel I have a voice and that I can contribute to its success.” Isn’t that wonderful?

And Nuno Dias ends with the most accurate summary of what makes us happy: We believe that good people, left at ease to work within the frame of the company’s culture, will do good things for customers, colleagues, and the company. That’s the Near Partner way.”

 How would you describe Near Partner’s culture?

For Indira, it’s all about our responsible informality. In her vision, “we are a company without many formalities, with a horizontal management and where relaxation and good vibes reign.”

To Afonso Dias, our baby developer (😁) it’s the culture of trust – both inside the company and with customers.

For Rute Pedrogão, our HR Manger, is of course all about People. She adds that “our team is made of amazing people. They are the ones who make the good work environment we live in, who come together to do things other than just working.” And she highlights another important topic that for us, as a team, which is a responsibility of everyone – The Emotional Salary. Obviously, Near Partner’s constant concern and availability as an organization are fundamental. But we must all play that role. Being available to help our teammates is essential to building happy and productive teams.

A skilled pair of hands. Blowing off some steam from all that steaming OutSystems development at Near Partner’s HQ, pre-pandemic.

A skilled pair of hands. Blowing off some steam from all that steaming OutSystems development at Near Partner’s HQ, pre-pandemic.

 

And Pedro Veloso emphasizes one simple principle: “we should all act according to what we think is best for the group. Each of us individually is part of the group and grows and improves with the group. We are a team, and we work along these lines.”

What does a normal day look like at Near Partner?

We already talked about our responsible informality, right? We are all different and that is why we assume each one has his own work method. Therefore, we leave it up to each one to decide how to organize their day, according to the expectations of the project in which they are in. Accountability and responsibility are key.

Therefore, each person has a different routine.

Rute told us how she started her day: “I turn on my laptop, give a shout out on our teams group channel, check the agenda and get to work. The normal day can be from 9am to 6pm or start in the early afternoon and go on until the evening. We have flexibility and that’s great.”

Indira has a slightly different routine. She starts with daily status meetings, which rarely exceed 15 minutes (you already know we are Agile obsessed!). “I usually have time to focus on my tasks since I don’t have to stop for meetings. It is all very simple and not bureaucratic.”

Jean was a little more philosophical on this one! 😊 For him, “the priority is meeting the trust and expectations my teammates have on me.” But there’s always room for interesting conversations with our colleagues for moments of learning, reflection, and relaxation, he adds.

What was the last interesting thing you learned from your teammates?

There are several moments of conviviality in which we try not to talk about work. Whether in the office, in our weekly remote meetings or in all-hands meetings, we always try to share interesting topics with our teammates.

Spoiler alert! Topics range from cryptocurrency to taekwondo.

Rute‘ last learning was about investments and cryptocurrencies. For Jean was about taekwondo and Afonso highlighted the insights he had about “hard and soft skills”. As a junior developer, it was very important to him to gather a few tips on how to talk with Clients and how to improve and facilitate communication. He already knows that “sometimes a marginal evolution at that level can bring enormous improvements!”

 What was the biggest challenge you remember?

Challenge is now our middle name. 😎
The pandemic just refined our problem-solver mindset.

But working remotely has brought challenges never experienced by us. For Rute, HR Manager, that was her biggest challenge. She said that “maintaining our team spirit, both with our current team and newcomers. Keeping team spirit in a 100% remote context is demanding, and the challenge continues…”

Jean joined the company during the pandemic under lock down. As you might expect, doing onboarding and adapting mostly from a distance was perhaps the biggest challenge.

Nuno‘s challenge was different. He will lead an external team to help them develop an online applications APP for schools, which will be used by tens of thousands of students. Cool right?!

But it is inevitable to return to the pandemic theme. For Pedro, CEO, his greatest challenge was to grow without losing our identity, so that everyone would continue to feel comfortable, happy, and challenged to do more and better. The constant changes, of which the pandemic is the most visible example, showed us that the most important thing is that people feel good. For him, the challenge is not how much we grow, but how we grow.

How is Near Partner gearing up for the future?

By making sure that we continue to have all the conditions for people to grow and be happy here, said Pedro. Happy people are better at solving problems and facing challenges. We must make sure that the balance we have is maintained and people continue to feel good about the Near Partner.

Happy people are better at solving problems, at dealing with new challenges, at innovation and simply… better at life. For us, this has always been a no-brainer. How would you like to work in one of the happiest companies in Portugal? Join us!

Pedro Veloso

I'm a serial entrepreneur and a (quasi-serial) father. I'm particularly fond of technology, solving problems and team culture, and my life lies at the intersection of those interests.

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